On February 21, 2023, Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered a state of the country address to lawmakers.
Brussels/Kyiv – Russian President Vladimir Putin made it clear today that he is preparing to continue the war in Ukraine. The North Atlantic Alliance will do everything to ensure that Ukraine has enough weapons and ammunition. This was announced today by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg after a meeting with the head of diplomacy of the European Union, Josep Borrell, and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. At the same time, he called on Russia to rethink its suspension of participation in the New START nuclear arms control agreement.
“It is President Putin who started this imperial war of conquest. It is Putin who is escalating the war,” Stoltenberg said in response to Putin's words today about Western aggression against Russia. The head of the alliance reiterated that NATO will stand by Ukraine as long as needed. According to him, Ukraine's allies will try to deliver the weapons and ammunition as quickly as possible, which Kiev needs in anticipation of the Russian offensive.
According to Kuleba, today at the NATO headquarters in Brussels there was talk of better coordination of the delivery of weapons and ammunition directly to the battlefield. The Allies have sufficient production and transport capacity, coordination is now important, said the Ukrainian minister.
According to politicians, Ukraine currently needs artillery ammunition in particular, but its stocks, like those of other weapons, are dwindling due to the protracted conflict. in warehouses of Western countries.
Stoltenberg said today that he intends to develop a plan together with the EU for joint purchases of weapons and ammunition, which could contribute to the necessary increase in their production. Borrell wants to present a concrete proposal at a meeting of the Union's defense ministers in early March. Stoltenberg announced that he would convene a meeting of arms industry experts with the aim of verifying all options for increasing production.
The head of the alliance also said today that he regrets Putin's decision to suspend Russia's participation in the agreement with the US limiting the number of nuclear warheads and their carriers. “More nuclear weapons and less control over them make the world more dangerous,” Stoltenberg said. According to Putin, Russia wants to know how the New START treaty will take into account the total nuclear arsenal of NATO, including France and Britain.
Stoltenberg also said after the meeting that NATO is increasingly concerned about the possibility that China could start supplying Russia with weapons. American Foreign Minister Antony Blinken also expressed concern about this development on Sunday. Borrell reiterated today that senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi had assured him that Beijing had no plans to do so. However, according to Borrell, the EU is following developments and is ready for all variants. Wang I arrived in Moscow today for talks with Russian officials.
Lost touch with reality, Ukrainian official reacts to Putin's speech
President Putin's speech showed that the head of the Kremlin has lost touch with reality, Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to the head of the Ukrainian presidential office, told Reuters. He wrote on Twitter that Putin “publicly demonstrated his insignificance and confusion”. In his speech on the state of the country, the Russian president, among other things, once again accused the West of starting the war in Ukraine, which Russia invaded militarily almost a year ago. international law,” an adviser to the Ukrainian president told Reuters. “Putin publicly demonstrated his insignificance and confusion. He emphasized that the Russian Federation is 'in the taiga of a dead end', does not have and will not have any perspective solution. Because there are 'Nazis, Martians and conspiracy theories' everywhere,” wrote Podoljak on Twitter.
Today, among other things, the Russian president once again blamed the West for the conflict in Ukraine. On the contrary, Russia tried to solve the situation in Ukraine by peaceful means and stop the war, declared Putin, on whose orders Russia launched an unprovoked invasion of the neighboring country almost a year ago. In 2014, Moscow annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea in violation of international law and also supported the pro-Russian separatist uprising in eastern Ukraine.